Al-Ahram Interviews Akef
Al-Ahram Interviews Akef
Saturday, October 22,2005 00:00
By Ikhwan web

Al-Ahram Interviews
AkefIkhwan online
Muhammad Akef, the Supreme Guide for the Moslem Brotherhood, emphasized that the movement has nominated 150 candidates for the upcoming parliamentary election. The MB expects to win 50 seats in the parliament. Akef noted that Mubark’s statements implied some changes.

The open dialogue between the Egyptian newspapers, Al-Ahram, was as the following:
·        How do you evaluate the Moslem Brotherhood in the parliamentary election in terms of the last one? Do you expect its outcome to be better than that of 1987 election?

- I guess the result of 2005 election to be better, if it is fair. I think that not more than 50 of our candidates will win.

·        The government regards you as legally banned movement; do you think it may take any measures against your candidates?

- believing that the MB is a banned movement is unsound. Any way, we can imagine any reactions of the ruling system though Mubark’s statements, after he swore in, underline some change.


·         Do you notice any change in the attitude of the government toward the MB political participation?

- Personally, I feel some changes. Now I observe a better approach that I hope to continue.


·        Do you have any contacts with the National Democratic Party regarding the upcoming election?

- Non at all. I have urged them many times to achieve better understanding for the benefit of the country. But there is no respond.


·        Does the MB use universities to show its power?

-It is not correct. We are not a majority power; we do not have widespread presence in state institutions or in the street.


·        Who will finance the electoral campaigns of the movement’s candidates, the movement or the candidates themselves?

The candidates fund their election campaigns, but they may be supported by those who have nominated them.


·        What is the number of the MB candidates in the coming election?

- We have 150 candidates, almost in each governorate with exception of Marsa Matroah. We may appoint a candidate there.


·        It was expected to have large number of female candidates, but why do you restrict to just one?

- We hoped to have 23 female candidates. However, the movement’s members refused to let their sisters or wives to stand for election, fearing to be subject to undesirable acts. Accordingly, we respect their desires. Now, we have only one female candidate, namely, Dr. Makarm el-Dary, a professor at Al-Azhar University.


·        Does the movement will elect all its parliament representatives to stand for the upcoming election?

- Personally, I do not have any idea. There is a competent commission to decide this matter.


·        How do you mange to coordinate with the National Front for Change and Reform though time is insufficient and you have already prepared your electoral list?

- We have agreed to coordinate in connection with reform. As for the election, we have set our lists; the Front has to prepare their lists. Yet, the MB is ready to relinquish an electoral circle, if the Front’s candidate is better than ours.


·        Do you mean that you will quit some electoral circles for the Front’s candidates?

- I do not know. The answer is in hand of the commission that is set for the election.


·        Who is the responsible for the disagreement with el-Tagama party; you or them?

- We do not approve the approach of the party regards certain issues, particularly the manner of Rafat el-Saeed, the party leader, toward the Moslem Brotherhood. He always brings illogic questions about the MB’s methodology and tendencies. I always believe that it is not suitable to reply on his remarks. Yet, it does not mean that all members of the party are similar to him. There are respective figures in el-Tagama Party such as Abdel Gafar Shokr and Hussein Abdel Razeq. 


·        Will this disagreement affect your decision to abandon certain electoral circles?

- If, in certain electoral circle, el-Tagoma’s candidate is better than the MB’s, we will leave it. I think that Abdel Gafar Shokr owns similar thought to ours. There are no profound differences between us.


·        What do you think of Khaled Mohy el-Dean?

- Up till now, there is no MB’s candidate in Kafr Shokr, the electoral circle of Khaled, but we will not let him to dominate. From my point of view, Dr. Mahmmud Muhay el-Dean is the best candidate in this circle.


·        Do you accept to coordinate with Nasserian Party?

- In fact, we do cooperate with it along with under-constructed el-Karama Party and the banned el-Amal Party. In addition, Nasserian party contains some noble figures such as Deia’ el-Dean Dawad and Hamed Mahmmud.


·        Does this coordination mean the end of the historical disaccord between your movement and Nasserian Party?

- We do not care about old stories. We concern with the present and the future.


·        Will the upcoming election witness a repeated alliance between you and Wafd Party?

- We coordinate with the unified National Front for Change, which includes el-Wafd.


·        What about the tension aroused between the MB and No’man Gomaa, the leader of el-Wafd party, due to the MB support to Ayman Nour in the last presidential election?

- The MB is not reasonable for the failure of el-wafd in the election; it is the choice of people. We did not back Nour, as it was alleged. There was no direction to the MB to boost certain candidate; it was optional.


·        Some opposition sides say that the MB does not prefer collective action; what do you think?

- We have certain principles, aims, agenda and norms. We welcome any side desires to cooperate with us, but within this frame. We do not accept to play second fiddle to any side. Our participation in the National Front underscores our willingness to make cooperation. The National Front was a product of three work shops, in which prominent intellectuals and leading figures from all parties took part. Although the MB represents the majority of the Front, we are eager to limit our representation in the Front General Assembly to 25%, in order to give chance to all other sides. This step was profoundly appreciated.

·        Why do you decline to coordinate with el-Gad Party in this election?

-  They do not ask for this, simply.


·        Why do you criticize Kefaiaa Movement that includes outstanding public figures?

- For we reject defamation, especially as regard the president, irrespective of differences. There is great distinction between criticism of polices and personal vilification.     


* The source is Al-Ahram newspaper